In Pictures: Microsoft products you may not know were acquisitions

Microsoft usually makes small purchases, but occasionally those small purchases pay off huge.

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Hotmail Another example of Microsoft jumpstarting its Internet business. It bought Hotmail, then rendered as HoTMaiL, in 1997 for $400 million. It was one of the first Web-based mail services, along with Yahoo Mail, which was also an acquisition. Yahoo bought RocketMail from a startup called Four11. Microsoft renamed the service MSN Hotmail.

It would be surpassed by Google Mail, and after falling into decay and misuse Hotmail became a home for spammers. In 2011, Microsoft decided to whip the service into shape, but its reputation was ruined at that point. Plus, Microsoft had a second mail service, Windows Live Mail, so it merged Hotmail and Live Mail into one new brand, Outlook.com.

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In Pictures: Microsoft products you may not know were acquisitions

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